Home buyers sometimes prefer homes with mature trees in order to make their property more attractive. Older trees offer shade, greenery, and maybe even fragrant flowers or fruits. However having larger trees near your home can lead to certain issues if they aren’t properly maintained.
Thankfully, tree management is simple and cost effective (typically), and can prevent almost all roof damage from trees. In this article we’ll discuss a few ways that trees potentially benefit your roof as well as a few ways that trees can lead to damage on your roof.
Ways Trees Can Benefit Roofs
Don’t get out the chainsaw just yet. There are many reasons to keep your trees around. Trees offer your home shade and enhance its beauty. They can even offer shingles protection, under the right circumstances. Trees benefit roofs by:
There are many reasons to keep trees around your home, they offer shade and help enhance the beauty of your property. They can even offer protection to your shingles, under certain circumstances. Some ways that trees can be beneficial:
Blocking the wind
Mature trees that are upwind of the roof can block a great deal of wind, reducing its effect on your shingles, especially during severe windstorms.
Providing Shade from the Harsh Sun
Mature trees can offer shade as protection from the harsh summer sun throughout the day whereas shorter trees may only shade your roof in the early hours of the morning or late in the evening. Still, any shade can help reduce the effect of UV light on your asphalt shingles. Over time, UV light can shorten the lifespan of roofing materials.
How Trees Can Lead to Roof Damage
Tree Falling: If you have a tree near your home that’s damaged, ill, too weak, or whose roots are planted in soft and wet soil, the tree falling on your roof during a storm is a possibility.
Dropping branches: Even smaller branches falling onto your roof can sometimes cause scratching to the shingles. If the branches are larger, this can cause an even bigger issue depending on the weight leaving dents or damage to the roof foundation.
Low-hanging branches: If not pruned, tree branches may hang over your roof. If these branches touch the roof or rub up against the roof during a windstorm, they can scratch away at the shingle’s outer protective layer. Proper branch maintenance is the easiest prevention for this.
Dropping leaves and needles: Is this debris from your tree bad for your roof? Yes, if you let it collect. Leaves and needles can clog your gutters and valleys, which can spell trouble for your roof. By absorbing moisture, this debris can also encourage mold, moss or algae growth, which can discolor your roof or reduce its lifespan. You may also want to consider gutter guards to prevent debris buildup in rain gutters.
Excessive shade: A little shade is a benefit in the summer to help keep your home cool. On the other hand, too much shade can make it difficult for your roof to dry off. If it stays wet for too long, your roof may develop mold and algae growth.
Animal access: Mature trees can allow animals, especially squirrels, to venture onto your roof. They may simply sit on your roof for a while, or they may choose to nest on your roof if they see the opportunity. It’s wise to cut back tree branches so that this access is removed.
Tree Damage Prevention Tips
Trim the tree: Hiring a professional to trim all tree branches that are too close to the roof. If you find that you need to prune more than 25 percent of the tree, it may be better to remove the tree entirely. A tree that has experienced such an extreme pruning is likely to die and fall over.
Prune young trees: You can also use pruning to control tree growth. You may prune young trees so that they only develop strong crotches (the junction between the branch and trunk), which are less likely to break off in storms.
Clean up debris: Remove tree debris from the roof and the gutters as soon after it has fallen as you can. If you have a tree that drops debris all year, such as a pine tree, you will need to clean the gutters and roof every few months.
Cut down unstable trees: Trees that are unstable or seriously ill should be cut down quickly before they have the chance to fall onto your roof. Make sure if you see any concerns with older trees that you reach out to a Tree Removal company to ensure safe and proper removal.
If you have concerns that your roof may be suffering from tree damage from one of the recent storms, give us a call for a free drone inspection.